Week 9 Fantasy Football Workshop: Win Your League
Week 9 Fantasy Football Workshop: Win Your League
Every week in the fantasy football workshop, I will go through all the important news and notes and look at any important statistical oddities that can improve our process in fantasy football (and help our rosters) while also posting my rest-of-season rankings. The idea behind this space is to give readers an insight into how rankings are made and for all of us to keep track of players’ values throughout the course of the season.
Week 8+9 Fantasy Football News And Notes
-Andy Dalton has been placed on the COVID-19 list. My understanding of this means that he cannot participate in games for three weeks. That leaves the Cowboys with Ben DiNucci, Cooper Rush (who is on the practice squad), and Garrett Gilbert as their QB options. If the Cowboys do not trade for Ryan Fitzpatrick or Jameis Winston, they may not have any startable fantasy options for a month.
– The Packers are reportedly mulling over trading for Will Fuller. By the time you read this, the trade deadline is probably past, but I think it is a fairly reasonable signal that we should expect WR firepower to be added to Green Bay this offseason. Keep that in mind during your dynasty offseasons.
-AJ Dillon has tested positive for COVID-19, Jamaal Williams has been ruled out because he is a “close contact,” and the Packers are unclear if they can count on Aaron Jones’ sore calf on Thursday night. Tyler Ervin has played 96% of his snaps this year as a WR. This basically leaves only Dexter Williams as a true RB on the Packers roster. He should be owned in all fantasy leagues against the 49ers on Thursday night.
-After Marlon Humphrey tested positive for COVID-19, the Ravens apparently have no new other positive tests. To be honest, I doubt this very much. We have already seen this happen with the Titans once this year. My guess is that there is a reasonable chance a few other Ravens are unable to play this weekend.
-Tua Tagovoila was #not #good in his first NFL start against the Rams, and the coaching staff admitted as much, suggesting that a “lack of live reps” contributed to his poor play in the win against LA. I bid on Tua in several high-stakes fantasy leagues over the Dolphins bye weeks, but it is pretty clear he will not be a fantasy starter for several more weeks, if at all in 2020.
– After Ronald Jones fumbled on Monday night against the Giants, he fully turned over the backfield to Leonard Fournette as Uncle Len played 51 of the Buccaneers offensive snaps. Fournette has some pass-catching upside in his current role, but his complete lack of ability will keep the competition door open for Jones and rookie Ke’Shawn Vaughn.
– Sam Darnold has AGAIN injured his throwing shoulder. The Jets expect him to play through it because, of course, they do. Given how bad the Jets have been for the last month, there is no reason to stop betting against them. Even with Braxton Berrios seeing an absurd target value volume (and one of the lowest yards per target you’ll ever see), the only Jets I want on my roster are Jamison Crowder, Denzel Mims, and (maybe) Lamical Perine. Literally, imagine starting Braxton Berrios.
– Bruce Arians was unwilling to put a hard cap on Antonio Brown’s playing time this upcoming week against the New Orleans Saints, saying that it could be between 10 or 30 but “less than 60”. Given how hard Tom Brady has lobbied to get on the team, we should expect a fairly high targets per route run for AB84.
– Gardner Minshew will not start and be inactive against the Houston Texans in Week Nine due to an injured thumb. Either Jake Luton or Mike Glennon will be the starting QB against Houston. Luton is a sixth-round draft pick rookie, and Glennon is, well, a human approximation of a giraffe. We will be reducing our expectations for the Jaguars offense.
-Isaiah Ford has been traded from the Miami Dolphins to the New England Patriots. Considering how thin the Pats are at WR, we should actually probably expect Ford to contend for a starting WR job with Jakobi Meyers and Gunner Oleswski from the time he shows up to practice.
-The 49ers injury cascade continues as Jimmy Garropolo and George Kittle are expected to be sidelined for what looks like close to the rest of the season. Kittle has a fracture in his foot, and Jimmy G hasn’t been right since the ankle sprain he suffered in Week 2. All of the 49ers offense takes a fairly little hit without Jimmy and especially without Kittle.
Week 8+9 Team Level Fantasy Football Analysis And Player Usage Notes
-Last year, one of my favorite things in fantasy football was using the Air Yards charts to create something I called the “Unrealized Air Yards” chart as well as “Unrealized Fantasy Points,” which was basically just to see how many fantasy points wide receivers were leaving on the field. The formula is not tricky; it is just Air Yards subtracted by actual yards as well as yards after the catch.
This is the table after eight weeks of football:
-Some fantasy-relevant observations: send some trade offers out for Marquise Brown. He is getting absurd air yards volume and has been consistently open all year long. DJ Moore remains a consistent buy low as a top 12 fantasy WR who everyone in your league thinks “sucks.” Diontae Johnson, Tee Higgins, D.J Chark, and Keenan Allen all look like “buy highs” through eight weeks.
-The bottom tier of the “flex-worthy” tier of running backs has been the worst investment spot this year. Fewer than 20 RBs have racked up 100 or more expected points through eight weeks. There is an absurdly long list of mid-tier RBS you can’t cut who are terrible starters: D’Andre Swift, Le’Veon Bell, Devin Singletary, and James White are all examples of this “roster clogger” style player, though we do expect Swift to really turn it on down the stretch.
-Since Tarik Cohen tore his ACL, David Montgomery LEADS ALL RUNNING BACKS IN EXPECTED POINTS !!! That sentence is not a lie, even though it sounds like it. From weeks four-eight, he has also accrued -22 expected points; that is hilariously bad.
-Tight ends with over 40 expected points since Week Four: George Kittle (RIP), Travis Kelce, Evan Engram, Darren Waller, Rob Gronkowski, TJ Hockenson, Jimmy Graham, Hayden Hurst, Dalton Schultz, and Trey Burton. It is an ugly, ugly position that has gotten uglier with a multi-month injury to George Kittle.
-Finally, the list of players who have exceeded their expected points by 12 or more fantasy points in Weeks 4-8 from the Rotoviz Weekly Stat Explorer.
Rest Of Season Fantasy Football Rankings